Hi Everyone, I realize that I am starting this blog with my typical apology for not writing any blogs since March......Please forgive me, I will try to get more updates on the blog again. The end of March, I had a film crew come in to do some more filming. They are doing a documentary on wildlife rehab and our facility, I look forward to seeing the finished project. Hopefully it is something that I can use to get some major support for two major projects that I want to get started this year. National Geographic has also contacted me about a visit. We really need this public exposure. NY Wildlife Rescue Center desperately needs a PR person and a grant writing person. I am spread so thin that I really have to carefully divide my time over everything. The first project we need to get started on is the flight addition (phase two) off of the aviaries (phase one) that we completed last year. With 175 foot of indoor flight area, we will be able to let raptors free flight and exercise indoors while we observe by camera monitors. In my opinion, this will be vital to getting birds released back into the wild that are going to be sucessful. The second project that we need to get started is a small pond for the Canada Geese and ducks that come in to our facility. Many are unreleasable and I would really like to see a better place for them to bathe and be waterfowl. If we can finish these two projects before the snow flies, we will be in really good shape to handle just about any wildlife call. Our motto has always been "first class, not half-assed" and I know that we can do this if the donations keep coming in and/or I get a strong turn-out of volunteers when we tackle these projects so we can eliminate labor costs. I am also looking for someone that would be interested in making a couple dozen raptor nesting boxes that we can sell at events as a fundraiser. We will supply the materials. I cant do this without your help both physically and financially anymore.
April went by quickly, I travelled with 32 students from our school to Europe for a historical tour of Germany, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, and the Czech Republic. It was very educational and I was very proud of all of the students that went with me. We were lucky to get back when we did, two days later they closed all of the airports due to volcanic activity in Iceland. The next day after we returned home, I had the first litter of raccoons come in. (April 13th) Last year I didnt get our first litter of coons until May 9th, spring came early this year. I will blog again about all of the wildlife that has come in over the past month, since my return from the trip with the kids. Besides for "Orphan Season" starting, we have also been busy getting our educational message of conservation and protection out to the public. On April 24th, Kelly Martin and I took our educational birds to the SUNY Cobleskill's Wildlife Festival. It was such a great day and we had a great crowd looking at the birds all day. The tree perches that Eric and Linda Brown made for us look great at events. On May 2nd, I attended the Schenectady Greenmarket....I was expecting a farmers market, I was surprised at the thousands of people that attend this weekly sunday event. Great crowd, great weather and I encourage everyone to go check it out....it was awesome. On May 6th I attended the NYS FFA Convention at SUNY Cobleskill. I love this organization as much as I love 4H. Any group that encourages youth to be involved with plants and animals is high on my list of groups to support. When I am on the road spreading the word, I am not getting much done at our facility but it is vital to our mission to educate the public. Check out our calendar of events on the website and try to visit us when we are out at public appearances. Our next event is next sat, May 22nd...Bird Day at the Huyck Preserve from 9 until 1 pm.
This weekend we need to get the bear cub enclosure finished for a bobcat that is coming in. This bobcat is not a wild cat that was injured. This bobcat was a pet, spayed and declawed and will be used for educational purposes. I am actually hoping that eventually she will get along well enough with our other unreleasable bobcat that I will be able to keep the two females together in the same large enclosure. The two male bobcats that were hit by cars are going to Cornell's Wildlife Center on Thursday, May 27th for check ups.....I am really hoping that Oscar can be released. With the nerve damage on Deja Vue's paw, I doubt he is ever going to be releasable. If not, the difficult decision is going to have to be made to keep him as an educational animal or euthanize him. Some factors that I always weigh out is age of the animal and ultimately if the animal is going to be content spending the rest of its life in captivity or if it will be miserable. The decision to euthanize is never taken lightly, humanely it is sometimes necessary.
This SUNDAY, May 16th is our spring shearing day. It is fun and many hands make light work. We need to catch every sheep and llama at the facility so Ray Baitsholts (797-5201) can shear it, then I trim feet and give shots. Anyone looking to get really dirty and get some good exercise....hope you can join us. We will start shearing around 9am most likely. I will be back soon to write another blog on all of the wildlife that has come in over the past month.... I leave you with 3 thoughts: 1. Do you have PR expertise? 2. Do you have Grant Writing/fundraising expertise? 3. Can you afford a donation as we get ready to build the largest raptor enclosed flight in the Northeast that I am aware of? There are people that watch things happen and people that make things happen, which are you?
Thanks, All my best, WES